How to Become a Property Manager

A property manager attends to the management of a property on behalf of an owner.

They complete a wide range of duties, such as advertising properties, conducting inspections, selecting tenants, and collecting rent.

They may manage a wide variety of buildings, from residential homes to large office complexes.

To become a property manager, you’ll need excellent interpersonal skills.

As the line of communication between a landlord and tenant, you will be called on often to negotiate, and not to let hostile situations escalate.

You’ll also need to have a good attention to detail, and be able to discover maintenance issues on property inspections.

Property managers also complete administrative tasks, so computer literacy and math skills are important.

Education Requirements to Become a Property Manager

If you’re still in high school, taking courses in math and English will be of help if you would like to become a property manager.

Completing some work experience with a real estate agent is also a good idea.

Many agencies need weekend receptionists, so this could be a good part-time job to consider.

Many property managers learn on the job.

They usually have some prior experience in management or customer service.

Working as an assistant, they will learn the ropes from an experienced property manager.

There are also many educational pathways you can take to become a property manager.

You can take a short course online, or attend community college to learn the skills needed to work in property management.

Another option is to complete a four-year bachelor degree in business administration or real estate.

This will provide the most opportunity for career advancement later on.

Property Manager Job Description

A property manager provides a service to a landlord, by managing the affairs of their property in their absence.

This includes advertising and finding tenants for the property, collecting rent, organizing repairs and maintenance, and generally making sure the property is kept in good condition.

Many property managers look after residential homes while others manage offices, factories, or even shopping centers.

A property manager also looks after many administrative tasks.

For instance, they must collect rent and forward it to an owner’s account.

They maintain their own database of clients, pay out invoices to maintenance services, and keep thorough records on all of the properties they manage.

Here are some of the tasks of a property manager:

  • Advertising and promoting a property
  • Taking perspective tenants on inspections
  • Processing tenant applications
  • Preparing leases and contracts
  • Arranging maintenance for a property
  • Arranging services like gardening and security for a property
  • Collecting rent
  • Following up on late payments
  • Processing invoices
  • Communicating with landlords and tenants
  • Handling disputes
  • Appearing at tribunal hearings

Some property managers who look after large sites like apartment buildings will get an apartment to live in rent-free as part of their arrangement.

Others get bonuses like a company vehicle.

Property Manager Salary and Career Path

Most property managers will start out their career as an assistant.

Many also work in similar roles in customer service or administration, then make the transfer across to property management.

Some work in other sectors of real estate or property, often becoming real estate agents.

A property manager may begin as an assistant, then be promoted to a full property manager.

They may also become department head or supervisors.

46% of all property managers are self-employed.

Some will go on to other careers in related areas.

These might include:

  • Real Estate Agent
  • Customer Service Officer
  • Receptionist
  • Administrative Assistant
  • Community Association Manager

The average salary for a property manager is $46,000 a year.

Those in entry level positions could expect to earn closer to $30,000 a year.

The top property managers earn over $68,000 a year.

When you become a property manager, you can look forward to a varied career.

It offers a good combination of administration and customer service, and also allows you to spend time out of the office.

Property management is a good option for those looking for a career that is versatile, as well as providing further opportunities to other jobs later on.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does a property manager do?

Property managers take care of practically all the aspects of properties (whether commercial, residential or industrial).

The specialists work on-site most of the time or spend the day in an office.

The main responsibilities of a property manager include showing a property to prospective renters; explaining the terms of occupancy and discussing the lease; inspecting the building’s facilities; collecting monthly fees; paying the bills (taxes, insurance, cleaning, etc.); keeping records of rental activity; hiring people to help maintain the property in a great condition; preparing financial reports, and so on.

Owners of properties that don’t have time to take care of all the things mentioned above usually hire property managers through a contract with a firm or directly.

How much do property managers make?

On average, a property manager in the United States makes a little more than $37.500 per year.

You can expect to earn anywhere between $30.700 and $65.300 annually.

Entry-level property managers can earn around $15 per hour; while highly experienced top-level property managers can make over $31.

The salary would mainly depend on the employer.

The property managers that work for insurance carriers usually have the highest wages – around $120.300.

Specialists hired by landlords and real estate brokers make between $60.000 and $65.000 per year, while property managers working for professional organizations can earn about $55.000.

How much does it cost to become a property manager?

In case you want to become a property manager, you wouldn’t need to acquire a degree – a high school diploma is usually enough.

However, the majority of the states require the property manager to have a license.

If you are working for a company, then the chances are high that you will be performing entry-level activities (in such a case you don’t need a license); however, in the future, you might need to obtain one (the fee is around $300).

After that, you can apply for various certification programs; the cost of the courses might vary, so be prepared to pay anywhere between a few hundred and a couple of thousands of dollars.

What is the demand for property managers?

Between 2016 and 2026, the property manager job market is expected to grow by 10.3%.

In the near future, the field will be able to provide good employment opportunities.

The industry is mainly concentrated in Texas, California, and Florida.

The professionals that possess a license and that have undergone certification courses will be able to apply for the highest-paid positions.

How long does it take to become a property manager?

An aspiring property manager has to be at least 18 years old (some states require the candidate to be over 21).

To obtain a license, you would have to undergo a 60-hour property manager pre-license course.

In case you want to get a certification, the first thing you would need to do is choose the type that is best suitable for you.

Some certification programs might require you to have at least 6 months of on-site experience, while others – 60 months.

Some online certification courses can be completed in only 10 weeks.

Find a Program